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Planning To Go To Tagaytay? 3 Important Things You Need To KnowAlert Level 4 remains in effect but some establishments in Tagaytay have already opened.by Kitty Elicay .
It’s been over a week since Taal Volcano’s eruption last January 12, 2020, but Alert Level 4 remains in effect as the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) says a “possible hazardous eruption” can still happen within hours to days.
The occurrence of earthquakes and the presence of high levels of sulfur dioxide mean that activities are happening underground. The volcano has also become “inflated” due to the magma rising from the volcano.
“There is seeming weakening in activity but it doesn’t mean the danger is over,” said Phivolcs volcano monitoring division chief Ma. Antonia Bornas as reported by The Philippine Star.
Tagaytay reopens: what you need to know
With Taal volcano exhibiting weakened activity, some businesses in Tagaytay have already reopened despite the Alert Level 4 status. It is, after all, a popular tourist destination. If you are planning to go to Tagaytay, here are some important things you need to know:
1. Is it safe to go to Tagaytay?
Phivolcs director Renato Solidum, Jr. previously said that parts of Tagaytay, while inside the 14-km danger zone will not be facing direct hazards of a possible volcanic eruption. For example, Tagaytay ridge is not considered a high-risk area due to its high elevation, and may not be directly affected by volcanic hazards like base surge and volcanic tsunami.
However, Solidum also said that these areas may still be vulnerable to ashfall, which can pose dangers to one’s health.
During a press briefing at the Malacanang yesterday, January 20, Interior and Local Government Undersecretary Epimaco Densing III discouraged tourists and locals from going to Tagaytay because Alert Level 4 is still in place.ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW
"Mamaya pag-akyat nila, biglang sumabog, makakadagdag pa sila sa tutulungan (If they go there and the volcano erupts, they will just add to those who will need assistance). We are really discouraging them from going to the area or even Tagaytay City,” Densing said.
2. Are hotels and restaurants open?
The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) has given its go signal for business establishments to reopen provided that they are not located in the eight barangays that the Phivolcs has placed under the danger zone.
The eight barangays are: Bagong Tubig, Kaybagal South (Pob), Maharlika West, Sambong, San Jose, Silang Junction South, Maharlika East, and Tolentino East.
For establishments that are located in these barangays, they may be allowed to reopen if the city mayor, Agnes Tolentino, approves it. "Secretary [Eduardo] Año has decided that those located in the higher portion of the ridge which based on the PHIVOLCS hazard map have low risk may be allowed to reopen by the local government unit. So, it's subject to the discretion of the Mayor and she will be totally responsible," DILG spokesman Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said in a press statement.
According to CNN Philippines, around 50 restaurants, 14 malls and parks, and eight hotels resumed operations in Tagaytay last January 18, 2020. Some of the establishments include:
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- Bulalo Point
- Chateau de Tagaytay
- Kuya J Restaurant
- Max’s Restaurant
- Pamana Restaurant
- Sonya’s Garden
- Summit Ridge Tagaytay
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3. How do I get to Tagaytay?
If you are coming from Manila and planning a visit to Tagaytay, you may pass through CALAX (Cavite-Laguna) Expressway and take the Sta. Rosa-Tagaytay Road. The Tagaytay-Talisay road has also been reopened to the public.
You can also use Waze. The navigation app has activated its Crisis Response mode so users can know where donation centers are located, take note of roads affected by the Taal volcano eruption, and identify whether they are in the 14-km danger zone.
On January 17, the app reported 308 road closures, but the count may increase (or decrease) in the coming days, so it’s best to keep Waze updated for any changes.
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